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Flavor, glorious flavor!Craig Bonham 141 —
I'm kinda picky when it comes to new classes. We've seen a grundle of gish variations, umpteen hybrids and a schmorgasboard of interesting concepts defeated by a designer terrified of being called out on creating something 'overpowered'.
So when I find a gem like this one right here I giggle with manic glee.
A magically enhanced melee type who can throw out debuffs, manipulate negative conditions and generally make a glorious horror of him/herself. The mechanics work and are easily enhanced through the use of pre-existing feats, something I very much appreciate considering the number of classes I've seen that desperately need the feats provided by the 3pp and don't really benefit from much in the core books. So we've got decent mechanics, which is nice, but it's the flavor I adore so much. An adventurer who drapes themselves in intimidating and horrific gear but isn't some heinous, evil villain-in-sheep's clothing. Kind of like what a goth might be if they decided that strapping on a chain shirt, pick up a maquahuitl and show those orcs a thing or two about how to be 'really' scary.
Two minor asides; one positive, on nitpicky. The positive. I mentioned maquahuitl because I have an absurd love of the weapon and this character class can actually USE one with their special weapon ability without worrying about the bloody thing shattering into a dozen pieces. The nitpicky. I'm a dad of a 16 year old girl, the fact that the art really leans towards the hootchi warrioress isn't my fav.
Do you even Mythic?Craig Bonham 141 —
Not if you don't have this book. I loved the addition of the mythic rules (I know, I'm in the minority) but even at first glance what I really notices was that most of the character concepts I play (Again, I'm one of those weirdo's in the 3pp minority) didn't really fit nicely into the mythic paths offered.
And then this magnificent tome (tome-ette?) came into my life. A massive, MASSIVE expansion on the different types of characters you can play in a mythic game. You want to be a divine-hating zealot, cutting down the faithful and sucking up their power into your hands? God Hunter on deck. You want to restore the concept of the shape-changer back to where it was spoken of with awe and respect? Yeah, Master of Shapes is for you. You've latched on to those AWESOME Masters of Time from Super Genius and you want to know what happens when they get turned up to eleven? The aptly named Timelord will knock your socks off.
And there is more. Super-Genius. Will-of-All. Scion of High Sorcery. Hollow One. World Singer. Overmage. Hive-Master.These paths really let you take Mythic for a spin.
Two other bits: One, the art. Wow. These iconics look mythic not just because they are blinged out to the gills. No, they have...I dunno, an aura, a weight to them that makes them seem like the world shudders beneath their feet. Second, at the end are some nice setting pieces that you could use to make mythic feel more a part of your world and less an exception.
Crunch, Glorious Crunch.Craig Bonham 141 —
Here is the thing; I don't use campaign settings. I don't. I make up my own. But what I do love is a campaign setting like this, one that offers up a TON of awesome crunch for use by me outside of the proffered campaign setting but in my own twisted little make-em-up world.
And boy-howdy but is there a bunch here. Great classes like The Entomancer; a druid for you twisted weirdos who don't want to squish every creepy crawly bug you see. The Fallen, a GREAT class for a mangled wreck of a magical catastrophe who wants to do great things alongside those pretty Paladins and fancy-schmancy Sorcerers. You want to be a butt-kicking magical cyborg? Can we say Golemoid? And there is way more. But I don't have the listy-skills to go through the whole bunch.
And we have new weapons, gear, feats, spells and even some kick-butt new monsters.
So in the end, I haven't TOUCHED the campaign setting data, but still have gotten way more than my money's worth out of it.
Book of Heroic Races: Advanced Favored Class Options (PFRPG) PDFJon Brazer Enterprises
Our Price: $3.99Add to Cart
Thanks So Very MuchCraig Bonham 141 —
Exactly the sort of thing I've been wanting and someone pointed out to me to my utter delight.
What we have here is a massive list of Favored Class Options for a near complete listing of the Paizo player races (hey, they keep making more!) for not just core classes, advanced classes, and hybrid classes but for 3pp gems like Time Thief, Wilder, Psion and more.
If you like options (I know I do!) this is a great little source for you.
Excellent Combo of Flavor and MechanicsCraig Bonham 141 —
Count me a fan. What we have here is a new class, a class with original abilities designed to give us an excellent version of the oft attempted Shadow Warrior. The spell-list has excellent choices from core Paizo options and a good selection of original spells that turn the shadow knob up to eleven. A load of feats great for the class itself or if you want to just use them for Wayang or Fetchling characters. Of of course a great selection of archetypes if you just want to dip your toe in the inky blackness. One of the better 3pp sources for a new class as it includes all the trimmings needed to play the class not just once but several times, with each time through being new.
A Necromancer's Grimoire: The Wonders of Alchemy (PFRPG) PDFNecromancers of the Northwest
Our Price: $2.49Add to Cart
Love Letter to a SkillCraig Bonham 141 —
This is NOT a supplement restricted to our beloved Alchemist class. It's better than that. Yes, it has all sorts of goodies; Serums and Infusions (a new class of alchemical boosters), poisons, and wondrous wondrous items of an alchemical nature. But these aren't just for Alchemists. You want to play a chemist wizard? This is a great supplement so your bunsen burners pop out items a bit more immpressive than sun rods or Potions of Bear's Endurance. We now have a glorious collection of items that can be churned out by any devotee of alchemy. Bravo.
I want sooooooo much to give this five stars. The beauty of this book is the introduction of very specific forms of magic; Ley, Ooze, Clockwork and many others. And I ADORE the idea of specializations outside of the normal spell schools. Mages and sorcerers who find a sirens call in some rare and esoteric group of spells, giving them power unknown to those more "mundane" casters.
You have so many new seeds of magical concepts that could fuel campaign after campaign of based on these untouched ideas. But the one problem (and in my opinion the ONLY problem in this beautiful tome) is that we have ideas a mile wide but only a few feet deep. I'd have almost preferred only half of these concepts to be presented but each of them presented more fully, with a longer spell-list and greater detail about how Ley Magic, for example, is different and how it can be best presented.
My hope is that this will lead to some dedicated smaller works from Kobold, where we are given even more specifity about these intriguing concepts. I know I'll be purchasing quite a few of them.
Fun With a Side of VarietyCraig Bonham 141 —
I've put off on writing this until I had a chance to play the one for awhile and now I'm ready to give my verdict. Fun stuff within these pages, Maynard.
You get a nicely variable class you can choose to play differently depending on your style. Want to have a hack n' slasher with an arcane boost? You got it. Ranged zapper with a plenty of fuel in the tank? Yup. Skill monkey with some variety in the form of Marvels? Well what do you know, you got that too!
And here is something that I think is very important, this works all by itself. This isn't the addition of a new rule set (which flux and rivenspells are to a degree) that is sorely in need of more to make it work. You can play a Rivenmage and play it fully with just this package. There are enough Rivenspells that with the Marvel options you can handle nearly any setup with confidence.
Now, understand, with the strength of Rivenspells being Supernatural Abilities you don't have a lot of supporting feats out there to pump them up. Which is actually a hidden blessing as you don't have a list of "well, obviously I HAVE to choose this grocery list of feats to make this work" and instead can focus on the feats you want to make your particular build feel original and fun for you.
The Bad: The only thing I've found wanting is a lack of favored class options. That's something I'd like to see made available but beyond that, I don't have anything to kvetch about.
The Ugly? Nothing here my fellow game-buddy.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Mythic Adventures (OGL)Paizo Inc.
Add PDF $9.99
Hopefully More To ComeCraig Bonham 141 —
I was thrilled at the concept of this book. Sometimes the story, the characters, need to step up to a more rareified level and really bring the oomph and this book provides the oomph. I especially love some of the little pieces added therein that make a mythic adventure less roll-play and more role-play; the concept that mythic power can simply go away, that the leveling of tiers is solely up to the DM, that in fact much of the advancement and introduction should be story-based.
Loved all of that.
But for what I didn't love.
1. The powers offered are wildly inconsistent in effectiveness. I don't mean powers that are taking for a roleplaying reason. I mean powers that are obviously crunch-based when compared to another crunch power and you cannot fathom how one is supposed to anywhere near equal another. The same with the feats.
2. The very limited scope of mythic paths. I get that this is the intro book and we cannot get a ton of paths right off the bat, but really, six paths? Only 37 pages of path descriptions and powers out of 250+ pages? I've played more characters that wouldn't fit into these paths thematically than would.
3. Mythic monsters takes 57 pages and could have been done in 10. Paizo has been awesome about not reprinting crunch from one book to another, really guaranteeing the value you get in a book. But the monsters presented are basically mythic versions of creatures we all know already. And the mythic build rules for creatures are simple enough (a good thing!) that all we really needed was one example.
So, I like the idea, was a little less than thrilled with the execution, but I am awaiting more.
Something New. Something InterestingCraig Bonham 141 —
Like much of Lost Sphere's work the Echo is a tasty addition for those who are looking for something that asks for a bit of attention and thought in our gaming experience.
In the Echo we have a class that does exactly that. He/She echoes whatever is going on around them. Slightly similar to the Taskshaper over at Rite Publishing but at the same time with fewer restrictions. And more. And therein is what I find so darn attractive here.
Tired of being completely outshone by your munchkin fellow players? Now you can keep up simply by being what you are. Or are you one of those unfortunates who feels guilty because regardless of what you play you make the rest of your party looks like simpletons? No longer, the Echo will have you playing at their level and not leaving them in the dust.
A simply designed class with great potential it also does something I really and truly enjoy that I've not seen done often enough in 3pp works; The Echo acknowledges other 3pp works and takes them into account within it's class abilities. Bravo.
And as with the recent update of the Transcendent Ten spell and feat offerings the Echo continues with some nice cover art and interesting layouts.
More. Now.Craig Bonham 141 —
I just purchased the pdf of this so that is what I'm reviewing.
The Good: Nearly everything Player based. Two new classes that are fun and interesting. The spellcaster has a limited spell list and the genius behind this book made the AWESOME decision to write up the spell lists in such a way as for them to be expandable with new sources of spells. Beautiful. An awesome flavor archetype for Summoner/Synthesist. Feats of the symbiote school of awesome that add some oomph but also a little danger. Very nice.
The DM stuff. New monsters, new items. Planet designs. Gosh and/or golly but this inspired me to do another Spelljammer type game. So...Zombie Sky Press? More. Now. Mach schnell.
The Meh: Not meh really, just I personally never use pre-gen scenarios, so that part of the book isn't useful to me. But again, it's my taste, not at ALL a shot at the quality here.
The Ugly: The swarm race? Gross. But so cool too.
The Bad: Nothing. No complaints. Not at all.
Great Concept, Disappointing Follow-ThroughCraig Bonham 141 —
I'm a big fan of the Genius Guide products. So I've developed a reletively high expectation of their products and this one has fallen short in a way that sincerely impacts my opinion of the company.
It's a great concept for a class. It adds temporal magic into the setting in a way that is understandable and fun. Introduces Time Motes and Aveunum class abilities to give a nice tiered effect for the character to use.
The abilities are NOT over-powered, but imaginative and slightly odd. A great challenge to a bored role-player to play something other than another vanilla damage-dealer.
The spell list is fairly limited and mechanically speaking will be a massive challenge for the character at higher levels to be able to provide an even secondary offensive/defensive role to the party. A number of the spells mimic non-Time Magic spells (variations on Shield, Mage Armor and Magic Missile for example) that have only negative's when compared to the original spell (The shield variation offers a shield bonus of +4 but it isn't a force-effect) but no postives that I can determine.
Here is where my disappointement really is. There are editing problems with the book. The spells per day table is incorrect, the level at which Aeveunum is available is contradicted between the class table and the class ability write-up. Neither of these are really a big deal, but they were brought to the attention of the writer very early after release, they were acknowledged and still no errata has been made.
Maybe I'm just being picky, but this is a pdf and correcting it isn't on the same level as having to correct physically printed materials. I purchased this nearly two years after the editing problems were pointed out and they are still there.
The Genius Guide to the Godling Ascendant (PFRPG) PDFRogue Genius Games
Our Price: $5.99Add to Cart
Hopefully Not the EndCraig Bonham 141 —
I've loved the prior two releases and this one is no different.
New scion talents that have a great sense of theme and direction to them rather than just some random bit of power to tack onto your golding.
Divine Traits for many different character concepts. You want to play a mounted warlord with the blood of Hercules pulsating through her? You got it. You want to play the scion of Adonis, with a beauty so pure and undeniable it takes the breath from common people? Right here baby.
Some good feats that fill in some necessary gaps.
And even more awesome, some great character ways to utilize the various decks (like the Crit Deck) that my gaming group loves.
The feel is still there, the enjoyable concept is only being rounded out rather than pounded into the ground. Adding concepts such as bloodlines, schools, etc just helps a player/GM move the presence of the godling more fully into their world.
Honestly, I would love to see some more.
Power Word Spells: Lore of the First Language (PFRPG) PDFRogue Genius Games
Our Price: $3.99Add to Cart
Lovely idea but has some real issues.Craig Bonham 141 —
I love the idea of Power Word spells. I think this work was put together with a lot of thought and I think affection for the concept but there is a real issue with what has been presented here.
The Good: New spells. Lots of them. New feats, some nice ones that build upon each other and let the player create a very textured and thematic character.
The Bad: The mechanics in the concept.
One of the issues with many offensive wizard/sorcerer spells is that they become effectively worthless. They only advance so far with their damage dealing and it's a terrible idea to restrict yourself to a spell that does 4d6 damage and never anymore once you've passed a certain level.
Even with two feats dedicated to bumping up the hit-point range that these spells impact each and every spell in this list will become absolutely worthless to a mage after he passes them by a couple of levels. The spells won't be worthwhile until well into battle, often to the point where the defeat of the adversary is pretty much a given.
So a wizard or sorcerer really trying to follow this theme is going to end up with a decent chunk of their spell selection moldering on the shelf, never to be cast again.
Some Gems WithinCraig Bonham 141 —
Looks nice, good font, decent art and a nice professional appearence. Some excellent feats and a couple of interesting new classes.
Some new races that don't quite feel like they belong in a Summoning centric book. But hey, they're new!
So, there is some really nice stuff in here, but it should take up only a small fraction of the page-count. And considering it's high price-tag for a pdf I consider that a pretty hefty negative.
Transcendent 10—Spells of Synergy: Theurgic Interactions (PFRPG) PDFLost Spheres Publishing
Our Price: $1.99Add to Cart
Excellent Concept. Excellent ExecutionCraig Bonham 141 —
I've purchased most of the Transcendent 10 options and this continues on with the tradition of creating options for spell-casters that want to do more than just be spell-chucking fighters. These are spells that create a sense of magical law and interaction encouraging the idea of a complex world for the character to tap into. There is a well thought-out logic at work here, one considering how magic might work beyond just the normal outlines of a spell's range, duration or dice of damage.
These spells invite the player to really delve into having a spellcaster who is a living conduit for complex and profound energies. And at the same time, mechanically speaking, they are effective and useful options so you are not sacrificing effectiveness for flavor. In the mechanical strength column you have the consideration that no spell is higher than 5th level and most are 2nd level. These are spells quickly accessible to characters, even multi-classed ones and the spells often have scaling effectiveness so they do not become useless once you're capable of casting the next spell-level.
Two bonus feats included and they both caught my eye as nice options.
One word for presentation. The cover art is lovely and the new background and page frame give the product an appreciated look. I appeciate the increased attention to the visual aspect. Bravo.